Child Life Program

Making the Hospital a Less Scary Place

We all know how stressful being sick and in a hospital can be, but sometimes adults don’t realize that children deal with those same emotions.

Child Life Specialists at Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital and Our Lady of Lourdes Women’s & Children’s Hospital are there to help children and their families cope with the stress and anxiety that comes with being hospitalized.

Child Life Specialists are specially trained to provide emotional support for families because they understand that a child’s well-being is dependent on the support of their family. They help promote coping through play, age-appropriate preparation, and education as well as self-expression activities.

Child Life Specialists help the hospital become a not-so-scary place by:

  • Reducing fear and anxiety during hospital visits with play and peer interaction
  • Guiding play with dolls, child-friendly photos and medical equipment to help children better understand their treatment
  • Preparing, distracting, supporting and accompanying children to procedures and surgeries
  • Offering comfort and support for caregivers and siblings in difficult and challenging situations
  • Providing crucial education to help children and families navigate new diagnoses of acute, chronic or life-limiting illnesses in an easy-to-follow manner

Normalizing hospital stays by celebrating birthdays, holidays and developmental milestones


How Humor Helps Kids in Medical Situations

Using humor can help children stay comfortable in a doctor’s office, hospital room or any other time they’re receiving medical care.
Laughter Keeps Kids at Ease

Preparing Your Child for a Hospital Stay

We understand that staying in a hospital can be scary for children. Our Child Life team is devoted to helping children and families cope with the hospital experience, through teaching and preparation, medical play, therapeutic activities, and developmental play. The team has provided a few tips below to help prepare your child.

Child Life Internships at Our Lady of the Lake Children's Hospital

A Child Life Internship offers specialized fieldwork experience with children and their families under the supervision of a Certified Child Life Specialist. This experience is designed to facilitate the student’s growth as a professional through participation as a member of a multidisciplinary health care team. The internship consists of a 40-hour work week for 15 weeks, for a total of 600 hours. Internships are offered each fall, spring, and summer.

Our internship program does not require the student to be enrolled in a university during the internship experience. If the student is completing the internship experience for school credit, an affiliation agreement must be made between the student’s university and Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center.Applications must be received per the deadlines set by the Association of Child Life Professionals.

There will be no Spring 2024 Child Life internships.

This program is only available at Our Lady of the Lake Children's Hospital.

Child Life Internship


Child Life Practicum Program at Our Lady of the Lake Children's Hospital

A Child Life Practicum provides students who are majoring in Child Life, Family Studies, Child Development or a related field the opportunity to work with hospitalized children under the supervision of a certified Child Life Specialist. Practicum students will have the opportunity to observe the Child Life Specialist facilitate pre-procedural preparation, procedural support and distraction, and medical/therapeutic play. Practicum students will also have the opportunity to participate in playroom programming and provide bedside play.

Practicum Goals/Objectives:

Plan and facilitate playroom activities and bedside activities.

This program is only available at Our Lady of the Lake Children's Hospital.

Child Life Practicum Program

Please note that Our Lady of Lourdes Women’s & Children’s Hospital Child Life Program is not accepting interns or practicum students at this time.


Acadiana's Only Child Life Program

Through play, learning and communication, Our Lady of Lourdes Women’s & Children’s Hospital Child Life Specialists help kids understand and process the complex feelings that can occur in a hospital.